To be a successful photographer, it's important to price your images based on your time, effort and market value. A pricing model with additional costs can help you determine the right price for your services. Consider opting for a pricing strategy that uses different packages. This allows you to divide the services you offer into levels and meet several prices at once. If you're thinking of turning your photography hobby into a business, one of the first questions that come to mind may be: “How much should I charge?” Setting the right price is key for any business, and photography is no different.
What you're really asking yourself is: “How much are my time and my work worth?” It can be a difficult question to answer, and you might find that you're downplaying your skills compared to the competition or out of fear of alienating potential customers. So how can you create a pricing model for your photographs that follows their example? Here are some steps you can take to start turning your passion into well-earned money. When thinking about the prices that might make sense for your photography services, be sure to consider all the factors that make up a session. Photography goes far beyond the day of the session, from an initial consultation with the client to finding locations, editing and uploading galleries. Don't forget the time you spend traveling back and forth to the photo session, organizing and configuring your equipment, and researching poses or accessories that might be a good option for your session. If you rent a study space, you'll also need to consider bills for rent, utilities, telephone and Internet.
If you have employees or have the help of a second shooter, salaries and payments will also come into play. All of these things represent much more time and money than just the time the session is scheduled for. That's one of the reasons why you might want to consider the price per package of photography instead of per hour. Make a list of all the expenses and associated factors that may increase the time of your session and set a package price that you're comfortable with. Ask yourself: “Is all this work worth doing for an X price?” If you're not sure, you're probably setting a price too low. The last thing you want is to start resenting the work involved in a photo session because you don't feel like you're getting enough in return.
When choosing your price, it's very important that you don't set a price that's too low. While a lower price might get you more photos, you can quickly sell out. Remember that being busy isn't always good, especially if it leaves you little time to enjoy your work. Setting a price that's too low can also lead to the assumption that your photograph isn't as good as the competition's. If someone is looking for the best real estate photographer in the city, they probably won't choose the one with the lowest price, because their perception is that the best one will never be the cheapest.
Your customers will think they're getting what they're paying for. However, that doesn't mean you want to be the most expensive either. Do some research on other photographers in your area who work in your niche and make sure your prices are competitive. Finding the right price for your photography is about trusting your skills and achieving the right balance. The good news? You can always change your price if you find it's too high or too low. Once you've decided on your price, state it on your website.
It's important to be honest and transparent with potential customers about all aspects of your services, and this can help save time back and forth with customers who may just be looking for the cheapest option. Because you want customers to contact you based on the overall value and not the cost, you should also spend some time creating a website that sells itself. If you want to dedicate yourself to portrait photography, fill your website with enlarged versions of your best portraits. If your goal is to be a sports photographer, show off your best action photos. Prove your value with the quality of your work to make your portfolio more memorable than your prices. Even if you've done sessions in other genres in the past, you'll want to highlight your value in your niche.
Having only engagement and wedding photos on your website indicates to brides that you have mastered the art of wedding photography and that you may be the perfect choice for their vision. Stick to your target gender so that you can make yourself known as an expert in that area. The price of your photograph should always be analyzed through the lens of time. It's important to set immediate and long-term goals so you can calculate how many sessions you need to book to achieve them. This will prevent you from working too much and staying up until 2 in the morning every night trying to get a gallery out the door. As you find your balance, decide how many shoots you can organize on a weekly basis.
Use it to calculate the number of sessions you can do each year and determine the price that will take you to where you want to be based on that number of sessions. If your goals change depending on the growth of your business, you can always adjust your prices accordingly. Pricing your services may not be the most glamorous part of photography, but it's important to find the right balance to set.